In brief: Insider still in breech, pondering C-sections and my irrational fear for an epidural.
Today we had the guided tour of the maternity ward, followed by a graphical movie and slide show about the birth process.
The midwife demonstrated all of the positions of the delivery contraption, I mean bed, the bath tub, birthing ball, ...
All fine and dandy, but it's unlikely I'll be needing any of those in the near future, since the Insider is still firmly lodged in the head up position. All that reading up on (semi-)natural birthing for nothing, not to mention sparring with the ob/gyn! I can pretend it doesn't matter to me all I want, it does. But yes, I will get over it and yes, it's a minor bump in the road compared with a lot of things.
The movie and slide show were accompanied by an ob/gyn who claimed that the hospital supports natural birthing. Perhaps, but I'm sure independent midwives would beg to differ.
After the movie and slide show, it was question time. I asked about epidural versus general anesthetic in C-section procedures. 99% of C-sections involve epidurals. General anesthetic is only done when absolutely necessary because the medication reaches the baby through the placenta. This means the surgeon has to perform the surgery as quickly as possible. With an epidural, the anesthetic doesn't go into the mother's blood stream and thus shouldn't affect the baby.
Should be a no-brainer in my situation, but I have an irrational fear of the epidural. The risks of complications are very, very small and the anesthesiologists get lots of practice (75% of women have an epidural). The ob/gyn said they'd never had any serious complications in their hospital.
That said, 'the odds are low' has long lost it's soothing effect on me. I've heard it before. Only recently, someone told me that the odds of a baby staying in breech until delivery are 3%. One guess what my money is on. Fortunately, the odds of serious complications with an epidural are much, much lower than that.
What can I do about an irrational fear? Inform myself to a certain point. When push comes to shove, I'll grit my teeth and find a way through. When it's over, I'll probably be ashamed for making such a big deal out of it.
The good news is, as long as I'm fretting over the epidural, I don't have time for that other irrational fear that something will go wrong during delivery.
Work is still crazy hectic. Can't wait to start my maternity leave!